360Q to sponsor local art prize

Since reopening 360Q in October last year, chef and business owner Barry Iddles has worked hard to reinvigorate the vibe around Queenscliff Harbour and draw more visitors to the township. He’s taking things to the next level by joining forces with Soula and Theo Mantalvanos, the husband and wife team from the amazing Queenscliff Gallery & Workshop and donating $4000 to become the principal sponsor of the Gallery’s inaugural Peebles Print Prize. Read the full story here!


Queenscliff’s 360Q restaurant will be the principal sponsor of the inaugural $5250 Peebles Print Prize, a printmaking prize hosted by Queenscliff Gallery & Workshop (QG&W).

The Prize is in recognition of celebrated local Queenscliff artist and academic, Graeme Peebles, who is world renowned for his intricate type of printmaking known as mezzotint.

Graeme studied and lectured at RMIT and is a multi-award-winner in his field with his work collected privately and by institutions around the world.

Soula Mantalvanos, who founded QG&W with her husband Theo in an historic refurbished Wesleyan church in the township just over 12 months ago, said Graeme is a local treasure.

“We knew about Graeme and his work but not many knew that this mezzotint master lived here,” she said.

“He simply wandered in to the gallery one day while we were renovating and our association grew from there. Now we exhibit and sell his work and he teaches mezzotint classes here.”

Being a purist, Graeme’s print method is traditional and in keeping with a process taught over past centuries.

“You need a lot of skill and it is very time consuming because it is 100 percent hand-done,” she said. “It can take months just to create the plate, and that’s before you start the scraping that forms the image.

“But people just melt looking at the work. You stand in front of a mezzotint print and you feel as though you are in front of a lush velvet curtain – it is mesmerising and magical and enchanting.”

Soula said she and Theo were inspired to create the Prize to not only to honour Graeme, but to establish a prize that exhibited the highest level of printmaking in Australia. The exhibition will run for six weeks in August.

Finalists will be in the running for the $4000 cash prize purse donated by 360Q and QG&W print studio access for five days including materials to the value of $500, as well as a People’s Choice award of $750 – both prizes supported by QG&W. Also supporting the prize are Direct Recruitment, Shelter Shed and Terindah Estate. The Prize is restricted to intaglio printmaking techniques including engraving, etching, mezzotint and aquatint and is only open to Australian residents.

“Theo and I thought of opening it up to international entries but we thought to focus and support our own Australian artists,” she said.

Barry Iddles, chef and business owner of 360Q, said he is thrilled to be the principal sponsor for the Prize.

“Since re-opening 360Q in October last year my team and I have worked hard to reinvigorate the community at Queenscliff Harbour and in the township, and I am delighted to be partnering with Queenscliff Gallery and Workshop for this event,” he said.

“This is such a beautiful part of Victoria and a real hub for artists as well as a tourist attraction for art lovers from Melbourne. We hope to put Queenscliff on the map with this Prize.

“I’m excited to see some of the incredible artworks that will be submitted and to be in the middle of the buzz that this event will create.”

Soula said partnering with a local business was the goal – and 360Q fits the bill perfectly.

“As a local resident, Graeme is such a big part of the Queenscliff community which is why we wanted a local sponsor as well, so having Barry on board is really perfect,” she said.

“We want to get the word out there about the Prize and also get everyone in Melbourne and around Australia to notice Queenscliff. It’s a destination for the world.

“The prize will also align with Geelong Gallery’s Acquisitive Print Prize which we are promoting together with Geelong Gallery. It’s an exciting time for lovers of print in the West.”

Entries for the prize open March 31 and close 5pm May 26. A total of 40-50 works will be chosen as finalists in an online pre-selection process and these will be announced June 30.

The exhibition will run for six weeks at QG&W at 81 Hesse St, Queenscliff from August 2 to September 11 with the official opening and the announcement of the PPP 2017 winner on Saturday August 5. The People’s Choice PPP 2017 winner will be announced on September 11.

Images courtesy QG&W.